As the holidays rapidly approach, I’m sure many single folks are dreading the family event where one of the following scenarios occurs:
- Female: Aunt Bea will, without fail, corner you and ask why you are still single. Followed by a pinch of the love handle that wasn’t there last year, and topped off by the awkward comment about your ovaries getting stale (or cobwebs in your womb).
- Male: Uncle Horace asks you how it’s “going with the ladies” (complete with lude hand gesture), followed by an elbow shot to the ribs and loud snort. “When are you going to stop getting the milk for free and settle down with a nice girl to make your mother happy?”
You could take the Debra Messing approach from the movie The Wedding Date, and hire yourself a date, or you can do one of three things:
- Prepare a witty comeback;
- Start the search for your mate now; or
- Analyze why you are still signal and accept where you are in your life.
1. Witty comebacks
While some might prove to be gratifying (depending on who the relationship query is coming from), some might contest that your need to punch back is a “thou doth protest too much” situation, and that, you too, are questioning your situation. I suggest you steer away from the snarky remark that could cause the other person to feel as awkward as they just made you feel.
Do your best to simply be honest.
“Aunt Bea. Although I appreciate your concern, your comments make me feel uncomfortable. I know how much you love me, so know that I love myself even more, and would never settle on anyone who I didn’t feel I could have a future with. You wouldn’t want me to be just another divorce statistic would you?”
Hug Aunt Bea and, even though you might not completely believe what you just said—you should. You are worth taking the time not to settle. Male or female—sex is just sex—but a fulfilling relationship is something worth waiting for.
2. Start the search for your mate now
People wonder how my husband and I were able to do a ten thousand dollar reno to our bathroom for only a fraction of the cost. Well, aside from the fact that we invested a lot of sweat equity into it, we took our time. We didn’t rush the process, which allowed us to source out quality materials at more than 50% less than what the average person would pay.
It’s the same with finding a mate.
Unfortunately, I cannot say that there’s one perfect place to find your true love. (If anyone does tell you that there is… I have a bridge I’d like to sell you.) You could spend years cyber-window shopping at online sites, only to become of the opinion that nunnery is the path for your destiny. Alternately, you could spend countless Friday nights at the bowling alley (in your very-best bedazzled red jeggings, of course), only to discover that the beer-swilling married men are the only ones undressing you with their eyes. But then… you might get into a fender bender on your way home from work and find that love has struck you out of the blue—literally.
3. Analyze why you are still signal and accept where you are in your life
Being honest with yourself about a particular situation (i.e. job losses, relationship issues, failed soufflé recipes, etc.), can be very difficult—maybe even impossible. If you are scratching your head about why your relationships keep failing (or why you are never able to meet anyone at all), go to your friends, family, or close colleagues.
I know, I know. You don’t want to open the can of opinionated worms, but you’d be surprise at how insightful people in your life can be. They know you the best, and might be able to pinpoint some of your quirks that are causing the roadblocks you keep encountering. Disclaimer: Only open up to those who do not exhibit passive aggressive (or not-so-passive) behavior towards you.
If you are not able to get information from someone who is in your life, then maybe sit down with a counsellor and just talk. I don’t mean that you need to go into “therapy,” but sometimes it makes a huge difference to have an unbiased, non-judgmental, non-emotionally attached person to use as a sounding board. They may be able to:
- help guide you towards a new path that may make a well-needed shift out of the situational ruts you are currently in
- bring enlightenment surrounding your life/personality patterns
- help you establish why you feel you need/want to be in a relationship
- open your eyes to personality quirks or patterns that are stopping your from feeling fulfilled in your life, in general
Whatever route you take, know that there is no perfect formula for change. Every person and every situation is different.
Fall in love with yourself and indulge in the things you love to do, and you might be pleasantly surprised at what amazing things fall into place.